About the Concern Debates

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About the Concern Debates

The Concern Debates have been running for 33 years, involving over 50,000 post-primary students in Ireland. Debating topics related to global development encourages participants to explore and be challenged by some of the world’s most important issues.

Quote from former Concern Debates winner

By taking part, students also learn the valuable skills of research and debating. Some are inspired to go on to become advocates for social change both at home and abroad. Around 140 schools across the country participate annually, including since 2014 schools in Northern Ireland.

The Concern Debates aim to:

  • Promote a deeper awareness and understanding of global issues
  • Provide students with a public forum, to develop skills in research, critical thinking, communication, presentation and team work
  • Encourage students and teachers to become lifelong advocates on issues relating to poverty, justice and human rights